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20% of Singaporeans take time off work due to asthma

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As if managers haven’t got enough to worry about, a new report has found asthma can be more destructive to workplace productivity than previously realised.

The REALISE™ Asiasurvey conducted by Mundipharma Pharmaceuticals found 20% of Singaporeans surveyed have had to take at least a week off work or school because of asthma, while two thirds had to miss at least a day.

Additionally, 60% of local respondents said they have been woken up in the middle of the night by an asthma related issue, causing them to have poorer quality of life.

“Across the region, patients consistently underestimate the seriousness of their asthma. They are less likely to pay attention to symptoms when they are not severe, which has profound effects on their daily lives, including work and school performance,” Dr. Tan Tze Lee, adjunct assistant professor at National University Hospital and a member of the REALISE™ Asia Steering Committee, said.

The report also found while 89% of respondents considered their asthma to be under control, only 18% were actually managing their condition according to GINA’s (Global Initiative for Asthma) clinical guidelines.

“Patients could be managing their condition better, which would positively impact their quality of life. It’s important that they speak with their doctor about improving the control of their asthma,” Dr Tan said.

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